This is my second article in a series on the basics of building muscle. In this one I will go over what I did to make it as easy as possible for myself to start building lean muscle mass. My goal was to develop a workout routine that would allow me to work out without ever missing a workout due to time or illness. I started out by setting my goal for calories: 1200. This is just a rough number, but I wanted to keep it low so that I wouldn’t get too hungry and bored while I was working out.
After I decided on the calories, I set a few more physical fitness goals. I wanted to be able to do pull-ups, chin ups, and pushups. Sentence examples of these exercises are: Grab onto a bar with your toes and raise your body as high as you can without considering the gravity. Another good example is to grab onto a bar with your hand and extend your arm as high up above your head as possible without lowering yourself. Remember that you must work in a complete motion using all of your muscles.
After I decided on the calories and the exercises, I set a few more goals: Light stretching before each workout, at least one heart rate monitor (I use the Healthometer Pro), and I wanted to start a routine where I ate three times per day instead of two. So I created a spreadsheet that I tracked my food intake with. It looked like a piece of paper with a few numbers on it gave me a visual picture of how many calories I had consumed during the day. Now, this was starting to look like a plan, even though I still ate junk food between meals.
Once I was up to the challenge of implementing my plan, I took a little trip to the doctor’s office. The doctor hooked up an EKG and then asked me some questions about my physical health. Based on his findings, he told me that I had adequate fitness. What I needed was more of a focus on my mental health. He explained that I needed to train my brain in a different way. It’s true, you can build physical fitness, but you have to strike a balance between that physical fitness and maintaining a mental health that will help you be happy throughout your daily life.
It takes longer than many people think to maintain a healthy mental health. I know, because I had a lot of trouble maintaining my own mental health while I was active and eating unhealthy food. I did, however, discover many ways to reduce my mental health while I was active. I found that when I didn’t want to do anything, I found ways to distract myself. This might sound simplistic, but I had never done so successfully before. I found that I didn’t have to sit down and focus and think long and hard about doing absolutely nothing!
These same principles are at play when you’re doing resistance exercises. Even if you don’t want to do anything, you can still use a variety of different exercises to make sure that your muscles get stronger and your heart gets healthier. Many people overlook the role that muscle plays when it comes to being fit and staying motivated. If you combine regular exercise with muscle strengthening exercises, you’ll be amazed at how much better you feel.